A few weeks ago, uproar occurred online concerning Victoria’s Secret’s new marking campaign called, “Bright Young Things”. This new venture stems from their line called “Pink” which is marketed to college age women. What has parents upset, and me as well, is the fact that this new line of undergarments is really aimed at young teenage girls (starting at age 15). The products consist of lacy thongs that have slogans on the crotch like “Call Me” and “Feeling Lucky”. Parents are rightly upset by the sexualization of their daughters and I think, as women, we should be upset over this, too.
Our society is already forcing our young girls to grow up long before they have too. Now on top of this unnatural push into adulthood, they are now being pushed into becoming sexual objects. As an Aunt, I would not want my nieces to ever feel that the only way they can attract a man is through expensive underwear with trampy quotes. Let’s also get real here, as adult women we shouldn’t feel that way either. Though the women’s movement was to free us from such pressures, I feel that women, no matter what age, are now being forced into being sexual objects.
Here is a quote from the Victoria Secret’s Chief Financial Officer Stuart Burgdoerfer, “When somebody’s 15 or 16 years old, what do they want to be?” “They want to be older, and they want to be cool like the girl in college, and that’s part of the magic we do at Pink.” Victoria’s Secret has claimed that they are only marketing to college age students. Well, this quote sure doesn’t prove that. It also doesn’t help their case that they recently had Justin Beiber (a teen singing sensation and a teenager himself) perform during one of Victoria’s Secret’s broadcasted fashion shows. Tell me, what adult woman really listens to Beiber? Would any parent really want their preteen watching? Clearly, Victoria’s Secret knows what audience they are aiming at.
There is the sad truth. A company does do research into who their targeted customers are and the truth be told many foolish parents are purchasing these products for their teenage daughters. Victoria’s Secret, despite their obvious degradation of women, would not spend millions of dollars creating a product that they know no one would purchase. The simplest way to prevent Victoria’s Secret from being successful is to not shop there. Well, maybe not so simple, since many parents are not taking an active part in their child’s life and thus are clueless to this form of sexualization. So it really all boils down to the parents or in my case, the aunt.
As a single woman, I want to take a stand against Victoria’s Secret and promote women’s rights by not purchasing any of their products. They will not use my money to create these trashy products for children. It’s time that as women we start encouraging our young girls to be ladies, to protect themselves, and to have confidence not in what they wear but in how they live. We do not need lacy underwear for that. Our girls need to feel protected and empowered, not the objects of a man’s desires.
Written By: Kristy Trowbridge